Effective management of manufacturing equipment is a necessity since they are a major investment by the company. Physical assets in heavy industries like steel or chemical plants have an asset life of two or three decades. This demands a robust maintenance solution to manage them, and track their operational efficiencies. Today’s market has two types of maintenance systems – Computerized Maintenance Management (CMM) systems and the Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) systems.
What are CMM Systems?
- CMMs are automated systems, that originated in the 1960s, to manage work orders using punching cards. Today, they support a wide range of features, including preventive maintenance, and inventory and asset management.
- Some systems offer features for project management, and multi-site support, as well. However, CMM’s main focus is on maintenance management, which makes them a dedicated system for maintenance operations.
- Businesses that use CMM systems usually integrate with other asset management solutions to fill the gaps for scheduling, accounting, and procurement processes.
- They have the advantage of being less expensive than EAMs. They are in demand by manufacturers who need a simple solution to manage their work orders or asset records.
What are EAM Systems?
- TechTarget defines EAM (Enterprise Asset Management) as “The process of managing the lifecycle of physical assets to maximize their use; save money; improve quality and efficiency; and safeguard health, safety, and the environment.”
- EAM systems offer good maintenance management capabilities, with a wide range of features for the complete asset management lifecycle, tracking assets from the procurement stage to decommissioning them.
- EAM systems provide centralized asset information that can be accessed by all concerned departments, including inventory, procurement, project management, accounting, operations, compliance, and IT. Asset information such as purchase orders, warranty records, repair history, invoices, audit schedules, and more, can be viewed on a central dashboard.
- EAM systems also support integrations with SCADA and BAS systems for real-time information on an asset’s current working condition and energy usage. Some EAMs also integrate with ERP and BI (Business Intelligence) systems to provide information on asset costs and performance.
- These systems are now being increasingly adopted by small and medium businesses since they require performance management and cost management features that are not available with CMMs. And, with EAM being deployed as a SaaS (Software as a Service) model, it has become a cost-effective option for manufacturers, as well.
While CMM systems are more focused on the maintenance aspect and are designed to manage assets in a single location (or, sometimes, limited support to a few more sites); EAM systems are multi-functional, operate globally, and encompass the entire asset lifecycle process. While both aim to reduce maintenance costs and maximize the value of the physical assets, EAM clearly has an edge over CMM due to its wider range of functionalities.
Finding the Right EAM Solution
Sometimes, CMM products are sold as EAM solutions. Therefore, plant managers need to study the solution in detail to ascertain its features before making the purchase decision. An EAM system offers manufacturers a broad, powerful and unified solution that helps increase equipment uptime, and streamline the maintenance process. It tracks asset performance and costs, manage resources, and optimize performance across all departments.
Is asset downtime causing disruption to your production schedules? Do you want to keep assets running at peak efficiency, while keeping costs low? If your answers are yes, then Infoways can help you. Infor EAM, a flagship product of Infoways, is a highly configurable EAM solution that is built on a platform with high uptime so you can handle elastic demand, as well. If you’d like to explore our EAM solution, please contact us and our experts will be glad to help.